The to-do list

Shopping for plants is a nice escape this time of year. It’s easy to get lost in the flowers and lush foliage and the imagined scents of spring. I was there the past few weeks and loved every second of it.

But today it was time to get down to business. Time to get serious. Time to start thinking about what needs to get done in the garden in just a few short months from now. It’s never to soon to start building the to-do list.

Here are 5 things I added to that list today:

Move that shrub

This Salix ‘Hakuro nishiki’ (Dappled Willow) has got to be moved. Even after cutting it to the ground in spring and selective pruning throughout the year, I can’t control it.

Many of you have pointed out that these are shallow rooted and somewhat easy to relocate so I’m not too concerned with the hard labor required.

I’m more concerned with the deer gaining easier access with this moved further away from the house.

But that won’t stop me.

Too much of a good thing

I love me some yellow or chartreuse foliage. It can pop when sited appropriately and really brightens up a shaded area of the garden.

But too much of it lumped together is a turn-off.

I need to strategically relocate and/or rearrange these Heuchera because I can’t stand looking at them in their current state.

Of course if the rabbits keep gnawing away at them I may not need to worry at all.

Divide and conquer

I can’t put it off any longer.

I have so many ornamental grasses that need to be divided. These are some serious clumps of grass so it won’t be easy, but the reward at the end is more grasses.

That is always a good thing.

Anyone want some? Make your reservations now. Yes, I’m serious.

Break it up

I shared this photo with you all back in the summer. You all gave me great suggestions on how I can improve the look of this section of garden.

Time to add some height.

Time to add some larger leaved plants.

Time to add some non-plants for interest.

This is what makes gardening so much fun.

Thank you.

Selective weed control

I believe the photo below is Bull Thistle. It is a biennial, rosettes year one and blooming/setting seed in year two. It’s hard to not allow this to flower when you see a scene like this one.

Canada thistle is another story. I need to stick with the “chopping it down to the ground regularly” strategy so it can burn itself out.

The point being I need to develop weed prevention plans by getting educated on the specific weeds I need to eradicate. Included in there are no chemicals and possibly allowing some weeds to stick around where it makes sense.

Time to evolve even more.

6 thoughts on “The to-do list

  1. Kate

    I used to grow organic vegetables for sale, and my veggie and ornamental gardens have always been organically managed. I did the IPM thing for my orchard and berry bushes. But. When it comes to thistles, the gloves are off. Thistles are why Roundup was originally developed. Nothing else stops them. Seriously, a couple dabs of Roundup directly on the leaves (or cut down the stalk and dab onto the stump), touching nothing else anywhere else, and that bad stuff goes directly to the roots, destroys the plant, and is soon broken down in the soil. Done. No environmental damage. Used in this way, it’s less harmful than some organic sprays. In theory, purity is a great practice. In practice, purity is an unhelpful theory. IMO! (I don’t envy you the task of dividing all those grasses, but you’ll be in awesome shape by the end of it!)

    1. jmarkowski Post author

      Kate – you had mentioned this before and it’s taken all my strength to not do it. I made myself a promise to never use RU but managing the thistle is still such a huge pain in the ass. Thanks so much for the feedback!

      1. Kate

        I understand. Just thought I might be able to break down that last bit of resistance. You are a tough man!

  2. Pat Evans

    Wish I lived closer to you. I’d take some of those ornamental grasses in a minute. I’m tired of fighting the deer (and the rabbits), but buying grasses in little nursery containers is hugely expensive. Good luck with the division process.

  3. Chuck

    So, chopping repeatedly at Canadian thistle eradicates itself over time? Doesn’t the roots just condition ye to thrive?

  4. Dell

    Hey. I am starting my to/do list soon as well. I’d love to have some of that Miscanthus purpurenscens if you are looking for a home for divisions. You have introduced me to it, and you said you were serious, lol. Obviously no problem if not. Congrats on the forthcoming books, btw.

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